Tag Archive : tips

Any small business owner knows how stressful the holiday season can feel. December comes around, and it becomes hard to participate in the holiday spirit amidst the hustle and bustle of the fourth quarter. Here are a few guidelines to staying sane during this busy time:

Eat a Balanced Diet
You may think eating has nothing to do with running your business (unless you run a restaurant!), but studies show that’s not at all the case. In fact, there are signals sent directly from your stomach to your brain, which impact your level of stress. So swap out junk food for some fruit and vegetables, and focus on portion size when attending holiday parties with indulgent treats. Eating better will actually make you feel better during those long days at work this month!

Ditch Your Coffee
Caffeine may feel good in the moment (like, really good), but overtime, too much caffeine can cause you to be emotionally overreactive to stress. Drink some festive egg nog instead of your usual cup of joe a few times a week. Cutting back on caffeine will increase its positive effects when you do drink it.

Time to Unwind
Another thing that will make you feel a whole lot better during those long days is a reward waiting for you at the end! Whether it’s time spent baking some christmas goodies, hanging out with your family, or even watching A Christmas Story- you need some down time to balance all your hard work. Also, reward your employees or co-workers by including them in a festive wine night, or treating them to dinner, where you can all focus on making spirits bright.

Get Enough Sleep
The National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute recommends seven to eight hours of sleep per night for adults. This holiday season, make a point of having lots of silent nights. You will feel more productive in the morning and be more motivated when helping your many customers!

Play Some Music
In the words of Buddy the Elf: “The best way to spread christmas cheer is singing loud for all to hear!”. Okay; so maybe the constant Christmas music echoing through the month of December is not something you find completely relaxing. That said, music is good for your brain. It makes you happier, more productive, and more motivated. Your mood can be improved by simply listening to your favorite tunes. Try listening to music on the way to work, or even playing it in your work environment.

Take some deep breaths, and keep calm this month. After all, the holidays are about appreciating our lives and loved ones, and spreading kindness. Keep that in mind, along with these relaxing tips, and you’re sure to have a successful holiday season.

You may have noticed the social media icons on a few sections of the SLN platform. I’m here to tell you that these icons, although small, have a huge effect on the success of your SLN page and even on your business. So, listen up. If you have accounts for your business on Facebook, Twitter, or Google +, it’s time to start pushing your SLN content as far as possible! Here is some useful information about sharing on social media:

We Make It Simple

It doesn’t get easier than this. We allow you to share your business profile, deals/promotions, events, and email content on most of your social media platforms all through the click of a button. By clicking on the Facebook icon, for example, you have the opportunity to push all of the content you’ve produced on SLN to all of your loyal customers. And even better, those loyal customers may choose to share your content, and reach even more individuals. Winning!

Social Media is a Necessity

It’s becoming increasingly important that small businesses have a social media presence. Make sure that your information is accurate and consistent across all the social media platforms you run. Facebook has the best ROI in terms of social media content posting. The more time and content you put in to your social media, the more likely you are to see a rise in sales, and Facebook is the front-runner in this area. Because of that, it’s a crime not to use it to your business’ advantage.

Be Aware of Your Followers

Is there a particular type of post your followers love to see? What receives the most likes or responses on your social media platforms? Think about these questions when sharing and creating your SLN content. You want to keep making your followers and customers happy!

Hopefully you’ve learned a few things about the significance of social media sharing. At SLN, we want you to be found online. We want that coveted recognition for your business. But at the end of the day, users who continually create and share new information on social media have better SEO, and better overall results. If you’re curious about these results, look up “Fresh Coffee Olmsted Falls, OH” on Google. Keep your eye out for The Village Bean Cafe; their SLN page appears before their competitors such as Starbucks. We love to see success stories like these, so, that said, good luck with social media sharing!

Joining a local Chamber of Commerce can be a hard decision for many business owners. Some look at it as just another incoming expense, and assume it’s not worth the trouble. But what it all comes down to are the member benefits, which often vary between chambers. However, there are many perks across the board to becoming a member. Keep reading to learn seven advantages of joining your Chamber of Commerce!

1. Publicity
Having your business appear on your Chamber’s website will give your business the extra boost you’re looking for. In addition, word-of-mouth referrals are a timeless form of marketing which should not be underestimated.
2. Networking
Regardless of your business’ size, networking is a key component to a success. Connecting with other business owners through the Chamber opens up a world of advice and camaraderie.
3. Sales
Did you know that in a study conducted by the Schapiro Group in 2012 showed that 80% of consumers were more likely to purchase a product or service from a Chamber member? Sales are an important, if not the most important, part of running a business. Your Chamber of Commerce boosts your reputation and therefore contributes to the sales you depend on.
4. Growth
Are you looking to expand your business, or even form a partnership eventually? If so, joining your Chamber can connect you to potential investors, or even instill the confidence, stability, and experience to expand your business.
5. Community Involvement
Becoming a member is simply a great way to give back to your community. It feels rewarding to participate, and also feels rewarding in terms of your business.
6. SEO
Since most Chamber websites have an authoritative relationship with various search engines, a direct linkage to your business’ websites/webpages will cause those search engines to reward your site just by association. This means your website will be rated higher and hopefully generate more traffic.
7. Member Benefits
These will vary among Chambers, but for the most part, becoming a member is usually worth it. Some benefits may be things like discounts, or connections to trade shows or other events. Not to mention, SLN partners with Chambers all over the USA and Canada, and we have an extensive list of benefits just within our platform! Make sure to inquire about us when you join your Chamber!

As aforementioned, becoming a member of your local Chamber of Commerce is usually worth it. If you have a small amount of money left over in your annual budget, you should consider joining, so you, too, can reap all the benefits you just read about!

As a small business, it’s becoming increasingly important to be active on social media. Facebook seems like the most natural form of social media for a typical small business, but what about Instagram? This could be the best way for your business to reach the fingertips of eighteen to thirty four year olds. Along with the email marketing, content marketing and search engine optimization offered by Save Local Now, Instagram is the perfect next step to elevate your business’s image! Take a look at these Do’s and Dont’s to get started on Instagram:

DO
Use Hashtags
Hashtags are a great tool for small businesses. Try making a specific hashtag, using clever wording, or simply your business name, which could become your signature at the end of every post. Aim to gain the attention of your followers with these short, to the point hashtags. Some brands you use or sell in your small business may even have their own brand hashtag which you can include! #brilliant
Show Off New Products
Make your new merchandise look better than ever using filters, and editing tools. It’s crucial to update your followers on what’s new in your small business. That way, they are more likely to come see you in person.
Post Special Deals and Promotions For Followers Only
This is a perfect way to gain new followers on Instagram. Post a photo with a caption mentioning that all new followers get 10% off their first purchase at your business, or $5 off if they come in that day. When you limit the deal to only followers, customers are more likely to take the time to follow you.
Update Followers on Sales and Events
Do you have an event planned for next month, or even next week? Let your followers know by updating your instagram account. In the Bio of your account, you should include the address of your business, along with any upcoming event dates.
Be Interactive
If a customer or follower leaves a comment on your photo, make sure to respond to them in a timely manner. This way, you represent the attentiveness of your business, even through social media.
Set A Location on Your Photos
Make sure to enable location on your device, then set a location on all of your photos, notifying your followers where the picture was taken. This is another way to create buzz around your small business.
Get Creative With Posts
Use filters on your Instagram photos, or edit them using apps such as Rhonna or Afterlight. These apps allow you to add words over your photos-a perfect way to advertise a sale or upcoming event! Instagram also includes Layout, which acts as a collage of photos.

DON’T
Post Low-Quality or Blurry Photos
Think of all your social media accounts as a representation of your business’s image. The quality of the photos you post should reflect the quality of the products you create or sell.
Use an Overwhelming Number of Hashtags
Yes, hashtags are a great tool; but a little goes a long way. Stick to 3-5 hashtags per photo, as to not cause disinterest in your followers.
Make Your Username Too Complex
Refrain from using extra numbers or words in your instagram username. Use the name of your business as your username so followers, who are your potential customers, can avoid confusion. If the name of your business is already taken, come up with a simple, creative solution. Example: if Main Street Coffee is your business, try using MainStCoffee.
Use Boring Captions
Your captions are a way to entice your followers to come visit your business. Make sure they represent your business in the best possible way.
Forget to Attach a Link to Your Website!
Make sure you have your website and SLN webpage as links in your Instagram Bio. This makes shopping easy for followers, and draws attention to your small business.

Marketers see LinkedIn as the second most valuable social network to grow and market a business, with it behind only Facebook (V3B Blog).  There are 300 million users on LinkedIn and 1 million of those professionals have published a post (Social Pilot).  This is one of many reasons the social media platform has become an excellent tool for networking and creating awareness for your small business.

It’s very easy to create posts to demonstrate your expertise or join a group and share ideas with like-minded individuals.  Around 20% of LinkedIn users are part of the Small Business Community, which includes a number of networking groups. We have taken the liberty of finding some of the best groups for small businesses to join on LinkedIn:

Small Biz Forum– 10,000+ members and likes to share resources and try to help each other succeed.

Mastermind Group for Small Business Owners– 19,000+ members who like to discuss challenges and solutions for small business owners.

Linked Small Business Innovators– 40,000+ members who considered themselves forward thinking entrepreneurs and small business owners who use this group to build relationships with other small business owners and try to find strategic partnerships with others in this group.  

Small Business & Self Employed Group25,000+ members who are strategizing to get more clients, build their businesses, and potentially create more income.

You can always start your own group! Creating your own group allows you to develop the focus and bring like-minded people together (whether it’s small business, community driven, industry focused, or anything else). Starting your own group shows leadership and creates trust between you and fellow group members which will have a positive impact on your business!

LinkedIn is a great place to expand your online presence and create opportunities by networking with others.  It is also a great place to share content and create relationships with both consumers and other businesses.  There are also plenty of local group that maybe more focused towards your interests.  Connect with Save Local Now today to start expanding your LinkedIn network!

 

 

 

Newsletters are a great way to keep your customers informed! Here are a few tips on how to get more newsletter subscribers!

 

  • Collect contact info. Carry around a clipboard and pen to events or even have one at the cash register ready to collect contact information for those interested in subscribing.
  • Provide benefits. Entice your subscribers with exclusive benefits, for example. additional information, discount codes, event invitation, raffles, or even give them the first dibs at sales or promotions.
  • Talk about it. Make sure that people know that you have a Newsletter. Promote it on social media and in any other emails that you send (and, of course, include a link to subscribe!). Also provide a sneak peak into what your newsletter is all about!
  • Make it easy. Make it simple to subscribe to your Newsletter. There should be a subscription option easily visible on your website.

 

Original Article

Marketing for services can be hard. Here are four tips on marketing your service like a product to make it a little bit easier:

  1. Use your Senses.
    Use visuals and text that encompass the experience of your service.
  2. Show your Gains.
    Show your clients how they will benefit through your service and show them what the end result will be. This can be through previous works or even testimonials.
  3. Brand it.
    Though you might not be able to package your service, you can use the location of your store to reflect the brand of your business. If you don’t have a physical location, use your website to package and display your brand.
  4. Emphasize your Customers.
    Make your clients feel involved in your service’s process by emphasizing your customers. Bring relationships into it as well. Create relationships with your customers so they not only feel welcome and return, but they also understand the your guidance and expertise is important and beneficial to them.

Want some more details? Check out the original article.

Whether you provide insurance for homes, cars, or anything else, you too have the opportunity to provide your clients with great deals and promotions. Here are some ideas to get you started on SLN (that don’t all involve discounts):

Free Consultations- This could provide as the perfect opportunity for a prospective client to learn what your company is about and what you have to offer.

Free Quotes- A free quote also is the a good opportunity to get the ball rolling and develop a relationship with your customer.

Switch Now and Save- Reward customers who choose you over your competitors. It may be just the nudge they need to choose you, or the cherry on top of your already competitive deals.

Get to Know Your Customers- Because you have no tangible item to sell, you must rely on developing relationships with your customers. It may be beneficial to include a “Meet our staff” promotion so that prospective customers can familiarize themselves with you.

This link is to a demo insurance company we created. Enjoy!

5 Tips for Your Small Business Marketing

1. GATHER EMAILS
Ask for business cards or require first time customer’s to provide their email address. Build a network. Use SLN’s free email marketing to share your business promotions and brand personality with the customers who care about you the most.

2. ASK FOR REVIEWS
Reviews and testimonials are the digital “word of mouth.” When you have a happy customer or client, ask them to share their experience on your social media pages. Don’t be afraid to add those reviews as testimonials on your website! Remember: you’ll choose one business over another because you’re friend recommended them. Same goes for social reviews/testimonials!

3. SELL TIME, NOT MONEY
Help your customers see the value of your brand. Save them TIME. Customers relate to “time well spent” more so than you’d think. How can you, your product or your service save customers time that they could otherwise be spending with family and friends?

4. CHANGE IT UP
Brand consistency and familiarity are important. BUT. Don’t be afraid to mix it up a little bit. Incorporate fun, engaging content into your marketing promotions; appeal to the masses. Is Halloween approaching? Give them marketing that they can really sink their teeth into. 😉

5. LEARN FROM YOUR CUSTOMERS
What do you know about your customers? Do they prefer fast service, or good service? Do they pay more when you personalize an email marketing message? Do they want to know more about your brand story and personality? Are they following you on social media? Survey your customers once or twice per year. Ask them what you could do differently, or what product enhancement they’d like to see next.

It’s a common misconception that digital marketing is easy. Throw some words on a cool graphic. Post on social media. Take out an ad here and there. Done! Yeah, If only it were that simple.

Successful digital marketing is reliant on striking a balance between instinct, elbow grease, and acute attentiveness. Not just paying attention to what you’re doing, but also paying attention to what is being said about your brand. Now, you may be wondering, “How am I supposed to know what’s being said about me?” One word: metrics. So many businesses tend to ignore the importance of their metrics, and in turn completely dismiss this vital source of information.

When it comes to digital marketing it’s important to not only understand your metrics, but to also utilize them in order to help you better market your brand. Here are some tips on how to digitally market smarter.

Overanalyzing can hurt more than it can help:

It’s easy to get swept up in the world of digital marketing. With so many factors, angles, strategies and opinions it’s hard not to nitpick. Sticking to the metrics (purchases, creation of new customers, conversions, etc.) will help guide your marketing in the right direction.

Your content doesn’t need to be perfect to be marketed perfectly:

I think we can all agree that the main purpose of your content is to inform, engage, and educate. However, many businesses are so invested on the creation of this content that they forget half the battle is distributing it. It doesn’t matter how flashy your content is; if it doesn’t reach, relate, or connect to your audience it’s irrelevant. Taking the time to determine the best channels and strategies for content distribution will lead to digital marketing success.

Quality over quantity:

One of the biggest mistakes a business can make is trying to increase their breadth while completely disregarding their depth. The desire to be everywhere makes sense, but focusing on the basics and building a strong foundation is key when your goal is long-term success. 

Experience is key:

Just because someone understands how to use #hashtags doesn’t mean they’re cut out to be your marketing director. You need someone who understands the countless marketing channels, and knows what should go where. On top of that, it is essential that they know what kind of metrics to look for and how to use that data to expand your brand. 

Measure, measure, measure:

Marketing 101: the goal of marketing is to create customers, and inevitably keep them. If you aren’t actively analyzing things like customer satisfaction and lead generation, you’re failing. By not basing your strategies off of solid facts and figures, you’re wasting your time. Remember: marketing without data is like driving with your eyes closed.

Grow:

Marketing is an ever-changing field, and digital marketing is no exception. What was successful a week ago may be old news today. Staying ahead of the game and knowing when its time to change it up is fundamental. A great marketer is thinking about next week while everyone else is still thinking about today.